2013 is going to be the year of the slave-theme movies.
Shadow & Act’s Tambay A. Obenson compiled a list of all the slave-themed films currently in production and found there’s seven films (that he knows of) in the works that will be released in 2013.
Obenson has dubbed the current Hollywood trend the “slave movie fever” and says the 150 year anniversary of the Civil War may be why all the studios are flocking to the slave genre.
Steve McQueen’s “Twelve Years A Slave,” an adaptation of Solomon Northup’s autobiography, is perhaps getting the most attention. The film about a man living in New York during the mid-1800s that’s kidnapped and sold into slavery in the south has a respected black director and a spectacular cast. The cast includes Quvenzhané Wallis, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Ruth Negga, Adepero Oduye, Alfre Woodard, Lupita Nyong’o, Brad Pitt and Michael K. Williams.
Another film, “Big Ben Jones,” will star former NFL linebacker Jeremiah Trotter as an escaped slave. Cuba Gooding Jr. also stars in “Something Whispered,” and Danny Glover co-stars in the upcoming slave uprising film, “Tula, The Revolt.”
The good news is we may actually see a black actor or director win an Oscar in 2014.
McQueen has said before that he “could never make American movies — they like happy endings.” (He’s also not afraid to talk about the politics of race.) “Twelve Years A Slave” is expected to come with a wildly different take on the subject compared to ‘Django.’